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There’s a reason why Tenerife, in the Canary Islands, is an incredibly popular choice for family vacations. Sandy beaches with clear water provide endless fun diversions for kids and parents alike. While the island’s hotels are readily equipped with pools, kids’ clubs and buffets, as well as convenient apartment-style rooms for when you need to whip up a quick meal. Here’s our pick of the best places to stay in Tenerife on a family holiday.
A massive pool area with a seven-tier waterfall forms the heart of this family-friendly compound. In addition to the heated pool and snack bar, the hotel offers a kids’ club, a mini disco and an international animation team leading water polo, ping-pong and other daytime games. At night, entertainment shifts to events such as magic and exotic bird shows. The hotel is under a 10-minute walk from Playa Fañabé and all of its adjacent restaurants, shops and beach clubs, and about a 10-minute drive from Siam Park, Siam Mall and Jungle Park.
Meliá Jardines del Teide is about a mile inland from Playa del Duque, the best beach in the area. A lovely meandering pool and three acres of pretty gardens dominate the hotel grounds, and there are several food and drink options including a themed buffet with plenty of options for picky eaters. With kids’ activities led in a shallow pool or the kids’ club, and a family-friendly party atmosphere at night, the experience at Meliá can be as relaxed or as amped-up as you want.
The family-favourite Catalonia Oro Negro delivers simple apartment-style accommodation just across from the Golf Las Américas golf course and a 10-minute walk from the beach. Nothing about the place is fashionable, but it’s earned the devotion of its repeat clientele with its unpretentious setting, fun vibe and all-day entertainment line-up that includes nightly shows. The pool area – with a separate kids’ pool, playground and sundeck – forms the centre point between the three room towers. Between pool sessions, kids can partake in organised activities such as mini golf and face painting.
Ideally located on Playa La Pinta Puerto Colón, casual aparthotel Hovima La Pinta is in a hotbed of eateries, ice-cream shops and tour operators for adventures such as kayaking, sailing and diving. The calm, clear waters of the fine-sand beach are like an extension of the hotel’s pool area, which has two dedicated for kids, one equipped with a spiral slide. Rooms have kitchenettes and balconies for self-catering and taking in the beautiful views.
One of the best-bet Playa de las Américas hotels for families, the beachfront H10 Conquistador is a mega-hotel with a serious pulse. Its buildings wrap around a palm-filled deck with undulating pools – one for infants and toddlers – islands, bridges and areas for group games and lounging. If kids need a break from the pools or the beach, which is just past the hotel gate, there are indoor/outdoor clubs for various age groups, featuring everything from a ball pit and playground to PlayStations and a jukebox.
This 194-apartment hotel has a self-contained, village-like setting of pools, gardens and two-storey peach stucco room buildings. Tagoro is on the far side of the highway from Playa de Fañabé, but it has excellent kid-oriented features, such as a chocolate fountain at dinner – available every night, no matter the menu theme – a well-designed splash pool and activity programming that includes archery, acrobats, magic shows and a mini disco.
Bahia Principe Sunlight is an elegant hillside property made to look like an ideal version of a Spanish village, lining one side of a vast pool. Pleasantly old-fashioned rooms and suites have terracotta tile flooring, ceiling fans and balconies, plus bathroom counters with double sinks. Mexican and Asian à la carte restaurants, plus Italian and Brazilian barbecue at the sister hotel, offer a change from the buffet.
For families wanting to swap the wild scene of Playa de las Américas for the serenity of Golf del Sur, the relaxed condo-style Select Sunningdale is a no-brainer. Two-storey, tile-roofed villas come in studio and one-bedroom configurations, all with full kitchens and balconies for al fresco dining. There’s an on-site shop for stocking up, as well as an à la carte restaurant and a snack bar. The nearby coastal village of Los Abrigos has many delicious seafood restaurants.